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Diversity Champions Project scoops award win

19 Aug 2020

Our Diversity Champions Project has won the Community Cohesion and Diversity Award category at the Outstanding Social Behaviour Awards

Diversity Champions 2020

The Awards recognise and applaud the efforts of people who have made a positive difference to the lives of others in the community, but also mark the achievements of people who have had the courage and determination to move away from crime and violence. This particular award recognises an individual or group who have been instrumental in bringing together diverse groups in the community for positive change.

The community project was created and run by Catherine Millan and Iqra Shah from the BAME programme team, Student Recruitment and Widening Participation, and the AIU Race Relations Resource Centre. The project aims to improve the understanding of hate crime among schoolchildren and young people aged 13–16 and give pupils from widening participation backgrounds campus capital and experience of university life.

Throughout the year, pupils from schools in Greater Manchester were invited to take part in different training sessions and workshops delivered by local charitable organisations that specialise in mental health, LGBTQ+ awareness, racism and discrimination. Students learnt about different forms of hate crimes and the importance of being an active bystander, before going on a field trip to Auschwitz in the summer. On their return, the pupils staged Diversity Days at their schools to share their learnings with peers.

Catherine Millan, Student Recruitment and Widening Participation Officer BAME, said: “We are honoured to receive this award from OSBA. The project has grown from strength to strength every year and it is great to work with so many dedicated young people who are passionate about reducing hate crime across our city. The young people have had such a transformational change from not really knowing anything about this topic to actively wanting to do more.

"With everything going on in the world right now and in particular with the Black Lives Matter movement, I am pleased that this project and the young people are receiving the recognition they deserve from Carisma Services through the OSBA’s.  Thank you to our University for their continuous support with this project, it is great to be able to come to work knowing you are also giving back to your community and doing your bit to make Manchester a safe home for everyone.”